Bond. Azle Bond.

If the bond is passed, this will be the schools layout. Photo courtesy of

Natalie Barnes, Staff writer, photography team

It’s no secret that Azle’s growing population has put a strain on the limits of the high school. The high school currently has a population of around 1,930 students, with projected growth showing 2,400 in the next ten years. The Azle Independent School District Board of Trustees has purposed a $79,820,000 bond to make renovations to the high school, as well as additions to Liberty Elementary. Voting to pass the bond will happen on November 5; early voting began Monday. 

About 32% of the bond ($25,879,713) will go towards a new kitchen/cafeteria with 800 seats, band hall, black box theatre, renovations and expansion of the Agriculture Science Animal barn, and 13 science labs. 

“I’m especially excited about the new science labs,” chemistry teacher Dr. Pam Jungman said. “I’ve been wanting for so long.”

About 24% of the bond ($18,751, 540) will go towards a new multi-purpose stadium that will include 6,000 home seats and 2,000 visitor seats, a new eight-lane track, synthetic grass field, restrooms and concessions, press box, and will meet all safety, security, and handicap accessibility codes.

“I really hope the bond passes because a nicer field will get us more hyped for games,” sophomore football player Caleb Balderas said. “Football is not only a physical game, but also a mental game, and a better environment will better our mentality.”

About 23% of the bond ($18, 704, 747) will go towards a new and renovated field house. It will provide adequate facilities that include locker rooms and showers for football, soccer, track, softball, baseball, tennis, and wrestling. In addition, there will also be a new weight room, wrestling practice room, athletic training rooms, athletic director office, meeting rooms, and ref locker rooms. This percentage of the bond will also include renovations to the six existing tennis courts and the addition of four new ones. 

“I’m not an athlete so this doesn’t affect me personally, but I feel like the athletes definitely deserve this,” sophomore Skyla Pantoja said. “They put a lot of time and effort into their sport and try their absolute best to make our school look good athletically, so I think this is not only deserved but is also motivation to keep up their great work.” 

About 21% of the bond ($16,704,747) will go towards additions and renovations to Liberty Elementary. The elementary school started the 2019-2020 school year with 484 students enrolled but a school capacity of 476. The renovations and additions will include new classrooms, learning commons, kitchen and cafeteria, gym, library, and music room which will bring the school’s maximum capacity up to 546.

There are, however, detractors to the bond as some vocal community members have pointed out.

“Liberty will get money for renovations whether the bond is passed or not,” Azle resident Tom Kisner said. “The city has some money that they can and will use for important things, it just is not the amount they need for everything. The way they advertise the bond makes it seem like if the bond isn’t passed then Liberty will get nothing. That is not at all the case.”

When asked for comment about the Liberty Elementary updates, Assistant Superintendent Todd Smith had this to say: “Azle ISD does not have the funds to do the improvements recommended by the Long Range Facility Planning Citizen Committee to the Azle ISD Board of Trustees at the June school board meeting. Construction in the bond proposal for Liberty Elementary includes a new classroom wing, new cafeteria & kitchen, new gym and other renovations to provide a modern learning environment for students in the Liberty Elementary attendance zone. This project would be similar to what was done at Silver Creek Elementary as a result of the 2016 Bond Election. These types of projects require a bond election. They exceed what we are able to do with our M&O (Maintenance and Operations) budget.

The nearly $80 million bond will increase Azle resident’s property taxes by $0.149. Which depending on property values, the taxes may not go back down for a while.

“We are still paying on the Bond of 2016,” Kisner said.

Although there is a lot of talk of the bond on social media, both for and against it, voting day is what really counts. 

“It’s up to the people of Azle now,” sophomore Madison Hart said. “There is a lot of debate on Facebook about the bond and who agrees, who wants it changed, who doesn’t want it at all. Many people post and comment about it, but it’s all a matter of who shows up to vote.”